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Disquiet over meagre police salary increase

PD Reporter

Disquiet was last evening building up within the police over a paltry salary increment that is scheduled to be officially unveiled during the two-day national policing conference that kicks off today.

Details of the new police salaries emerged yesterday ahead of today’s conference whose culmination will be an address by President Uhuru Kenyatta tomorrow.

According to the pay structure, the lowest paid officer will now earn Sh19, 290 — an increment of only Sh529. The increment range from Sh529 to Sh2,000 depending on one’s rank and year of service in general.

Police officers of the lower cadre will get a three per cent increase while those of the higher cadre will receive only two per cent in the second phase. The increment has drawn criticism among many officers, who feel it is too little.

But insiders in the service revealed that the increment followed crisis meetings spearheaded by the National Police Service Commission (NPSC). The Treasury and the Salaries Remuneration Commission were also involved. In a circular to the National Police Service (NPS), the NPSC said Phase Two of the new salary scale had been implemented with effect from July 1, 2018.

“The new salaries will apply to uniformed officers in the National Police Service in police grades 1 to 12 who are in the service on or after July 1, 2018,” said a memo signed by NPSC chief executive Joseph Onyango. The first phase of the increment was implemented last year in July and the most junior officer received an increase of Sh1,500. The increase affects both the National Police Service and the Kenya Prisons Service.

The 2017 announcement of the pay increase, made three days to the General Election, drew reactions from junior officers who termed it an insult as it did not meet their expectations and was not commensurate with the work they do.

Currently, the salaries vary depending on one’s experience. Apart from the basic salaries, allowances also differ. The National Police Service has 12 job grades and the civil service has 19 pay scales. Constables, the lowest-ranked and who are the majority, are on scale PG1 while senior officers fall in PG 12.

In the new pay, a constable who has been earning Sh18,760 will get Sh19,290 while a senior assistant inspector general will get Sh188, 090 up from Sh185,760.